Flirting with the Waiver Wire: Week 5

As a child of the 70’s I take pleasure today as May 4th celebrates Star Wars.May 4 Star Wars Day Quote Some of my favorite memories include going to see Star Wars at the drive-in (for maybe the 10th time) dragging my family or friends as long as it was playing. Maybe it was the perfect segue pulling me to fantasy baseball with the all the gravitational force of the Death Star. Speaking of gravitating forces, the time is coming to tinker with rosters. A month has been played now and roles are becoming more defined. More prospects are arriving with C.J. Cron debuting yesterday with three hits for the Angels and Marcus Stroman joining the Blue Jays today. There are also bullpens and rotations in disarray. Savvy pickups that do not jeopardize rosters are optimal as some owners start to turn an eye towards the football draft and the next season of mock drafts approach. Here are this week’s selections if you are looking for an upgrade on your roster.

eHarmony – Players who are not 65% owned but could be

Pos

Player

ESPN

Yahoo

CBS

C

Jarrod Saltlamacchia

27.2%

49%

62%

2B

Omar Infante

48.6%

31%

56%

3B

Todd Frazier

58.1%

58%

79%

SS

Alcides Escobar

45.3%

43%

54%

OF

Dayan Viciedo

49.4%

23%

67%

OF

Marlon Byrd

44.2%

38%

52%

SP

Nate Eovaldi

44.2%

44%

84%

SP

Corey Kluber

16.4%

54%

83%

RP

Hector Rondon

25.2%

37%

29%

With owners losing Wilin Rosario to the DL today, replacing his power will be tough to do but Saltalamacchia’s recent power surge may be the remedy. Last week he had two home runs, four RBI and scored seven runs while hitting a robust .529. While that will not always be the case, if he is on a hot streak, now is the perfect time to add him and ride it as long as it lasts. The Royals middle infield appears again if you have a need, but their offense has been struggling. Dayan Viciedo burst onto the scene after gaining playing time with the injury to Avisail Garcia. He is far from perfect, but can fill a power void for teams looking for home runs. Marlon Byrd does not seem to have the trust of fantasy players. After a miserable season with the Red Sox, he bounced back with the Mets last year and is in a better hitter’s park in Philly. Like Salty above, he also had two home runs last week, drove in six runs while hitting .438.

On the pitching side the players are a bit more alluring. Nate Eovaldi has been a revelation in Miami. Both he and Corey Kluber were pitchers touted by Paul Sporer of Baseball Prospectus and while Kluber has had some rough patches, he is money at home. As this is being written Kluber has struck out seven consecutive White Sox batters after allowing a first inning home run to Jose Abreu. Today’s start will ensure that Kluber has double digit strikeouts in two of his last three starts. Eovaldi has won two games so far along with 35 K’s in 38.1 IP and having one of the best average fastball velocities in the majors. Like Kluber, he is better at home but pitching in the NL East has to enhance Eovaldi’s value. I wrote about Hector Rondon last week, and if you added him when his ownership was half of what it was above, I appreciate you reading. Rondon is a former top prospect and you can read his player profile here. In four innings this week he has five strikeouts along with two saves and a tidy 0.50 WHIP. He may experience some learning pains along the way, but the job could be his. If you own Broxton, dropping him for Rondon could pay dividends going forward.

Match.com – 12 Team League Adds

Pos

Player

ESPN

Yahoo

CBS

C

Wilson Ramos

37.2%

42%

53%

1B

Chris Carter

10%

22%

31%

2B

Jedd Gyorko

41.9%

61%

80%

3B

Juan Uribe

50.6%

36%

53%

SS

Jhonny Peralta

46.7%

56%

71%

OF

Chris B Young

0.6%

3%

22%

OF

BJ Upton

48.7%

33%

37%

SP

Jon Niese

13%

21%

74%

SP

Tyson Ross

22.7%

64%

85%

RP

Ernesto Frieri

39.9%

57%

47%

RP

Marcus Stroman

0.8%

17%

41%

Once again, Rosario owners may again catch lightning in a bottle, Ramos could return this week so if you lost the Rockie catcher, stashing Ramos tonight may be prudent. He has been swinging the bat well in his rehab and if he could ever stay healthy…..

Two players I have a hard time giving up on each provide power potential. Jedd Gyorko and Chris Carter both seem to be warming up. I watched each player’s at bats yesterday and they are seeing the ball better. Even Carter’s outs were loud yesterday. If you are fortunate enough to not be buried by their early season struggles, both could provide home runs going forward. I am calling a seven home run month in May by the “Gyork Store”.

Two outfielders who need initials in their name to identify them are similar players. Each has power and steals potential with a potential drain on batting average. But like the two players above, they are on the upswing right now. B.J. Upton has increased his contact since wearing prescription glasses. Here are their respective weeks:

  • Chris B. Young – 7 R, HR, 5 RBI, SB .389
  • B.J. Upton – 2 R, HR, 4 RBI, 2 SB .250

On the pitching side, Jon Niese has to draw some attention after throwing seven strong innings in Philadelphia beating Cole Hamels. What the Mets have lacked on offense and the bullpen, their starters have tried to overcome. He is set up to be a two start pitcher this week at home against the Marlins and the same Phillies that he just beat. Tyson Ross is such a frustrating pitcher to own but if he is at home like today, he is a must start. Until he shows that he can pitch well on the road though, he is a match ups play but his slider should have him more universally owned. Since being demoted as the closer, Ernesto Frieri has thrown four clean innings and had two strikeouts in his appearance last night. Joe Smith is a nice story but all the articles I am reading suggest that manager Mike Scioscia may switch them sooner rather than later making Frieri a potential high reward stash this week. Why the Blue Jays are going to promote Marcus Stroman and his wipeout slider to the bullpen and not the rotation is beyond me. But if they give him the 9th inning, he is worth the speculation. Arms like this do not fall to the wire all the time, so if he is available in 12 team or AL only leagues, go get him no matter the role.

Plenty of Fish – 15+ League Adds

Pos

Player

ESPN

Yahoo

CBS

C

Welington Castillo

1%

6%

18%

1B

C.J. Cron

0.8%

4%

17%

2B

Scooter Gennett

7.8%

9%

25%

3B

Juan Francisco

1%

3%

12%

SS

Eduardo Escobar

0.4%

1%

1%

OF

Cameron Maybin

0.5%

2%

13%

OF

Sean Rodriguez

0.5%

1%

3%

SP

Brandon McCarthy

1.8%

5%

17%

RP

Daisuke Matsuzaka

3.8%

7%

12%

If Ramos or Salty are not available, a viable replacement may be the improved Welington Castillo. He is batting .467 over the last seven days with a run and two RBI. If the Cubs continue to improve though, his counting stats should do the same. In a surprise move, the Angels promoted C.J. Cron as their backup first baseman and designated hitter. Though he will have to hit his way into the lineup on a consistent basis, he was brought up to provide a spark. Cron was covered in a profile here. With Pedro Florimon scuffling as always, the Twins are taking a long look at Eduardo Escobar and in his last four games has six hits in his last eleven at bats with two runs, two RBI and a stolen base. Deeper league players needing steals should take a look at Maybin while he is healthy. Sean Rodriguez has had flashes before but with Ben Zobrist slumping should see his name in the lineup often this week.

Brandon McCarthy pitched a great game last night striking out six Padres over seven shutout innings. He seems to be turning the corner and has the potential in deeper leagues to make an impact. Not only is he improving and bulked up, but his twitter account is worth following for his humor. Last week I hyped Rondon as a closer in waiting, and this week it may be Dice-K. Yes, that Dice-K with the Mets. Farnsworth blew the save last night in Colorado and received the dreaded manager’s vote of confidence today but the Mets need someone to anchor the role, so why not try Daisuke? Of interest, the Rays released Heath Bell and he could be someone to resurface with the Mets since they are harboring all closer retreads.

Good luck this week on the wire and may the force be with you.

Greg Jewett is a staff writer for Roto Analysis and you can follow us @RotoAnalysis and @gjewett9

Star Wars Picture Credit: https://s-media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/67/fd/f8/67fdf8425495f1c6f9fa601f565e42f8.jpg

Statistical Credit:

Fangraphs.com

Baseball-Reference.com

Yahoo.com

CBS.com

ESPN.com

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2 Responses to Flirting with the Waiver Wire: Week 5

  1. Neville May 19, 2014 at 21:36 #

    I really like what you guys are up too. This sort of clever work and coverage!
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